Governors are responsible, with the school’s Strategic Leadership Team, for setting the direction and development of the school. They hold dearly the vision of what the school can be. The document below gives an overview of their responsibilities and shows the way that they structure these.

Governors Handbook

Andrew Brewerton

Andrew Brewerton


Andrew Brewerton (Trust Director and Chair of Governors) is Principal of Plymouth College of Art, Chair of Plymouth Arts Centre, and Honorary Professor of Fine Art at Shanghai University. An English graduate of Cambridge University, he was made an Honorary Master of Education at the University of St. Mark & St. John Plymouth in 2013. Andrew has held various public appointments: e.g. as Chair of the South West Regional Council and national board member of Arts Council England, and as Vice-Chair of the Prime Minister’s Advisory Group on Higher Education (PMI2). A poet and author of more than fifty book, journal and catalogue publications on contemporary visual art, his critical writing has been translated into Chinese, Danish, French, German, Italian, Malay and Spanish. An Italian edition of his poetry will be published by Edizioni Kolibris (Ferrara) in 2014. 


Dave Strudwick

It’s an immense privilege to lead such an amazing team and work in such an inspiring community. I have a love of learning, music, sport and architecture. It’s amazing what we are making together each day and I am certainly looking forward to the next part of the journey.

I have lead schools previously, written a book about behaviour and been involved in many interesting projects including the Blackawton Bees which resulted in the world’s youngest published scientists. However, the making of Plymouth School of Creative Arts is head and shoulders above the rest. This is a project that will become increasingly recognised internationally.

Jeff Stratton 

Philosophy march 2016021

Jeff Stratton has been an educationalist for over 50 years. From his initial work as a youth worker in 1958 he joined the teaching profession. Since then he has worked in primary and secondary schools, was a headteacher and a senior education officer, but always primarily an artist. His passion is teaching children and young people and in 2012 he won the Pearson Teacher of the Year Award for Lifetime Achievement. He is currently working with Phases Two, Three and Four.


Graham Steen

Graham studied at Manchester University where he gained a BA in architecture. He became a registered and chartered architect in 1969. Graham was an associate of the BBW Partnership from 1972 and opened and ran their Plymouth office from 1972 to 1981. In 1982 Graham established is own own practice and until retirement in 2003, he was the Senior Partner and Managing Director of Steen Mitchell Architects. Our work included, factories, universities, colleges and schools, housing, MOD establishments and other marine associated industries. Graham has acted as an expert witness for over 30 years. He was the President of the Faculty of Building for two years from 2004 to 2006.

Graham was a governor of Devonport High School for Girls, Plymouth for 6 years where he set up their master-plan and procurement policies. He has been a governor of Plymouth College of Art for 10 years. Graham helped to establish a Capital Build Committee, with particular interest in the development of the master-plan for the site and construction of three major schemes to provide new workshops and studios. Graham has agreed to remain an independent committee member of the Capital Build Committee of the College of Art until all projects have been completed. Graham is a founder member of Plymouth School of Creative Arts, and the governor holding the property portfolio. He is also a member of the Rotary Club of Plymouth and a Paul Harris Fellow.


Tim Bolton

Tim Bolton is currently Vice Principal Academic at Plymouth College of Art. He originally studied ceramics and glass at the RCA, practicing in architectural ceramics and glass. His teaching career has covered most types of institution and most levels: running workshops for children, adult and community learning, Foundation courses and programme leadership of BAs and Masters courses. During 2005-2006 Tim undertook a teaching fellowship at the University of Plymouth, part of their CETL, investigating the emerging theories around “Threshold Concepts” and “Troublesome Knowledge” specifically in an Art and Design context. Tim has been an external examiner for the University of the Arts London at Central St Martins and Arts University Bournemouth. Leeds Met, and the University of Bournemouth. And continues to be an External Examiner at UCA Canterbury, Leeds Met and Ravensbourne.

In 2009 Tim co organised along side Malcolm Ferris the first Making Futures conference, a biannual international event looking at the crafts and sustainability, Making Futures 3 took place in September 2013 and saw over 150 delegates from 37 different countries attend the 2 day event. Although now less directly involved in the conference curation his current research remains in the area of endangered craft skills. These include traditional crafts in the UK as well as across the globe i.e. ceramics, glass, weaving etc. The disappearance of historic craft manufacture has created a hiatus in human social behaviour and distances us from physical contact with the materiality of our environment. His research is involved in looking at the social and economic conditions affecting the ability of craft and making to be sustained and to sustain communities.

As part of the Senior Management Team at Plymouth College of Art Tim was involved from the inception, in the application to government to open the first Creative Free School in the UK. His main input has been shaping the curriculum offer and in developing the pedagogic ethos of the school.


Richard Clarke

Having qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1980 Richard worked at City University in London before moving to Plymouth where he became Director of Corporate Finance at the University in 1998. Richard became one of the first independent members of the Audit Committee of Plymouth City Council and after becoming a governor at Montpelier Primary School in 1993, he served as Chair of the Governing Body for over 10 years (and continues to be a governor at Montpelier).

Having left the University in 2006 Richard continued to serve as Minister and Chair of Trustees of Beacon Park Baptist Church, a position he held for over 20 years.

Richard is also a trustee and treasurer of the Trinitarian Bible Society, a large international Bible translation and distribution charity based in London.

Richard’s association with the Plymouth College of Art began in 2004 when he joined the Corporation (Governing Body) as a business member. He retired as College Governor in 2014.


Benjamin Dunks

Originally from Australia, Ben studied Biology and Chemistry at the University of Queensland, before decided to become a professional Dancer and training at Queensland University of Technology and at the Australian Ballet School. On leaving ballet school I worked with numerous Australian Dance Companies, touring Australia and Europe several times. Ben moved to the UK in 1999 and worked with a number of leading dance companies and choreographers, in the process getting to perform in amazing theatres, remote village halls and French Citadels. Ben became more focused and interested in education and the arts at this time and subsequently became Artistic Director of Attik Dance in 2011, an ACE NPO company with a focus on education and community. Ben is deeply passionate about dance, movement and how the arts and creative thinking can inspire and support us to experience extraordinary lives.


Rachid Rkaina

I have a multicultural background, having studied in French and British institutions being fluent in French, English, Arabic and Spanish. I taught Art Design and Craft in state and independent schools and colleges up to Head of Faculty for 13 years. my career took a different path as Co-ordinator of the Education Employment Programme (EEP) to bridge the gap between education and employment and introduce industrial practices in schools and for senior management. In 1992 I embarked on a new career in the civil service as a Principal Officer with national responsibility responsible for Art & Design, Design & Technology and Food Technology at the School Assessment and Examinations Council (SEAC) up to Advanced Level.
This was followed by a spell as an independent Educational Consultant setting up of an IT programme in schools in France, Germany and the UK to, design and make artifacts collaboratively and at the same time enhancing the teaching of languages. I worked for two of the national examinations boards prior to joining Lord Sainsbury’s Trust as the Director of the Technology Enhancement Programme (TEP).
This was followed by the post of Director of the Science Enhancement Programme (SEP) based first at Warwick University and then at King’s College London. The work involved the production of innovative teaching materials and enhance existing Initial Teaching Training courses (ITT) in close collaboration with Cambridge University, Birmingham School of Education, King’s College, Southampton University, London Institute, York University and the Teacher Training Agency (TTA).
In addition I was involved in several programmes with the Wisemann Institute in Israel, Dusseldorf University and the Centre International d’ Etudes Pedagogiques at Sevres (CIEP), the Institute of Physics , the Royal Society of Chemistry and Nuffield among others.


Jo Anning 

I have been a Governor at PSCA since January 2015 and I love the school and all that it represents. With a background in Psychology, I spent 14 years working with children and families facing a distressing time and have seen how important offering appropriate support can be to nurture individuals. Having the opportunity to work creatively opens up the ability to express and explore in different ways, there are endless possibilities.
Previously as CEO of a local charity, the key was always keeping those that used the service at the heart of every decision and I believe at PSCA it is something which is encapsulated at every level. I currently run my own coaching retreat business which values the individual and encourages people to find and follow what makes their heart sing.
I am Chair of the Childhood Bereavement Network which is a national membership organisation and I am currently working on a project to provide grief support in a nearby county as there is currently no provision. Being a Governor at another local mainstream primary school gives me an alternative insight into education delivery and provision.


Hannah Ames

Hannah Ames


I currently work as Sister in Intensive Care at Derriford hospital where I have worked for the last 13 years. I have 2 children my eldest being in year one and my youngest just 18 months. My time working in the NHS has given me experience of implementing change, service improvement, decision making and being the voice for patients and staff. I wanted to use these skills and become involved in the decision making which affects our children’s school lives, be an advocate for parents and children views and help support positive change and growth.
I am passionate about engaging people through creative and inspirational teaching and regularly teach clinical skills sessions at the university to student nurses.
I play the violin, love running and baking in my spare time and doing all the other crazy things that come with family life!


Alistair Mullen

Alastair Mullen holds the “Business Folio” on the board of governors. He is a construction professional with almost 40 years’ experience. Following training as a quantity surveyor he worked in the civil engineering sector on the M25 and at Portsmouth Dockyard. He spent nearly ten years in the commercial fit out sector, including delivery of 8 floors of the original tower at Canary Wharf and the last twenty years in the regional contracting sector in the West Country, helping to deliver hospitals, schools, colleges and university buildings.Alastair had direct involvement in the delivery of the new school for PSCA, managing the preconstruction phase; facilitating the selection of the architect and assembling the technical team that supported them. Away from work he is a swimming teacher and, together with his wife Fiona, a respite foster carer. He has one grown up son. He believes that all people should be given the opportunity and encouragement to explore and realise their potential. Moreover, that quality of life can be improved for all by education and from the sharing of knowledge and expertise. January 2016




Darren Fisher

From my first contact, with PSCA, I instinctively knew 3 things:-

–          This was the school for my children,

–          I wanted to be actively involved with the school,

–          I truly wish I’d had the chance to go to this school with these teachers.

Professionally, I work in the Satellite Navigation industry, building business links across Asia and the Middle East. I was brought up in the area, but have lived in France, the Netherlands and the South East as well as travelling extensively across Asia. I am not from an Art background, but I strongly believe that a creative, enquiring mind has been key to my career in business.

I am hope to represent parents on the Governor panel to both support the remarkable staff at PSCA as well as being a strong advocate for their views on how the school develops as PSCA grows beyond its current early days into a creative hub that our children will be proud to say “I went to that school!”